Machine Gun

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Posts posted by Machine Gun


  1. Guys, thank you all for your replies. OK, I guess I'll have to man up and do it right. My main problem right now is time, so the oil pan project may have to wait until the fall. Fortunately the leak isn't so bad that it has to be fixed before I use the car during the summer.

     

    I just fixed oil leaks from the rocker cover and intake manifold seals, which were practically vomiting oil from the top rear of the engine. The car practically created a Super Fund site wherever I parked it, but the top end is nice and dry now. Anyway, as simple as those fixes were, they took me weeks to complete just because I've only been able to steal an hour here and there. It's been crazy busy, and I want to drive the car as often as I can instead of having it laid up while I do another job. My time situation is probably not any different than with most of you. Anyway, thanx again for your insights and advice.

     

    Jim


  2. I have an oil pan gasket leak that I want to fix. The engine is the 300 c.i. V8. A prior owner apparently over torqued the bolts to the point where two had sheared off, and the gasket needs replacement anyway. My question is whether the motor mount bolts have to be removed and the front of the engine raised in order to get the pan out, or not. The factory shop manual indicates that has to be done, but the Mitchell repair procedure does not indicate the need to do that. My problem is that I'm not in a position to raise the engine, so if I follow the Mitchell procedure and find that the engine does indeed have to be raised I'll be past the point of no return with a destroyed gasket. 

     

    I'd like to hear from someone who has actually been there and done that. Thanx.

     

    Jim


  3. It wasn't the weekend, but I finally took the Skylark out on the road yesterday for the first time since parking it in the garage last fall. It had been leaking oil pretty badly from the rocker covers and the intake seals, and I finally got around to replacing them. I still have the oil pan gasket to deal with, but things are vastly improved and the car will see a lot of road time this weekend.

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  4. Beautiful car! It brings back memories of my own Opel, a 1973 Manta Rallye that I had while at college. Mine was the same color as yours, except that mine had the flat black hood. It was a blast to drive. I wish there were more of them around.

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  5. There's nothing particularly exciting about this one, but I'd love to have a 1969 LeSabre four door hardtop with the 350 engine. My dad bought one new and I'd get to drive it around every so often. I always loved the look of the '69 Buicks. If only I had a larger garage...

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  6. Grew up in a city (Paterson, NJ) where it was always a crap shoot as to when your street was going to get plowed. It wasn't necessarily on the same day that it snowed, which made it interesting. In those pre-snowblower days you had to shovel out your driveway and hope that you got out before the plow came through and doubled your workload. Worse yet if we had one of the cars parked on the street that you had to dig out. Of course if we got out before the streets were plowed the drive was pretty interesting in our '69 LeSabre or later '73 LeSabre, which were pretty terrible in the snow without chains. Then there was the adventure of getting back into your driveway if you got out before the plow came, but got home afterward.

     

    We're certainly able to get around reasonably well and safely back then as we honed a different set of foul weather driving skills, but we have it so much easier today with front wheel drive and radial tires. We had to do all we could to get moving back then, and once we did we kept mindful of the fact that it was slippery precisely because of the trouble we had to get the wheels turning instead of slipping. That's the good news. The bad news is that modern FWD and 4WD vehicles now make it easy for those who lack honed skills and common sense to get enough traction to get up to speed where they can do some real damage.


  7. A couple of comments from my own experience. First, I agree that at that price the car might best be considered as a daily driver, in which case $10K may not be unreasonable. However, as wndsofchng intimated your $10K car may well not be a $10K car once you've finished attending to the things necessary to bring it up to daily reliability. My experience mirrors his to some extent.

     

    Back in October I picked up a 1986 Pontiac 6000 LE with 30,956 miles on it as a replacement for my 2013 Dodge Dart that I put a gazillion highway miles on since new. I've always wanted an older car to use as a daily driver, and the Pontiac filled the bill for many reasons that included the combination of funky looks with semi-modern features such as working A/C, disc brakes, shoulder belts, etc. The car is immaculate inside and out and runs like a top. Paid $2,500 for it. But it's no longer a $2,500 car. Having been a motor head since I was a young child, I knew what I was in for with regard to getting it in shape for my daily 100+ mile commute. I'll spare you the details, but my $2,500 car is now a $4,000 car that I've put nearly 7,000 trouble-free miles on since I bought it, and I haven't looked back. It's not a stylish car, but I'd rather have it for $4K than some new jelly bean that'll set me back $30K or more.

     

    To the point as others have made, if you look at it as a daily driver you'll probably end up paying more than $10K in the end, but where are you going to find a comparable vehicle for that amount of money, and with such low mileage and style? Hopefully a very close inspection can provide clues as to how the vehicle was stored over the years and how it was maintained while it was on the road. For example, if the car was driven 500 miles annually as a pleasure car was the oil changed annually, or did it have only one oil change at 7,500 miles and the owner doesn't think it's due until 15,000 (you might be surprised how some people think).

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  8. I put about 170 miles on the Skylark yesterday between a trip to PA for a clambake at a friend's place in the Poconos, and a cruise-in at a local restaurant here in Sussex County that has the event every Saturday night during the summer. My only disappointment was that by the time I got to the cruise-in the parking lot where the classics are displayed was full, so I had to park in the adjacent field among the great unwashed. Otherwise, it was a fun day.

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  9. Update: Apparently the supposed dealer, WeBe Classics, isn't what they appear to be. Go to their home page and look at the photos under "Our Collection." The cars shown cars that have different photo backgrounds, with some photos even having the selling dealer information in them. Read their About Us description where they say "...and as a car dealer we enjoy the challenge of meeting and exceeding those standards..." Then go to their inventory page and read the fine print at the bottom: "WeBe Autos Ltd. is NOT a Dealer. The independent partner/member is representing the owner of this item..." The whole thing smells, but now I'm not sure from which end.

     

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  10. I've alerted eBay as well. I confirmed that it's the same car. I requested the VIN from the LI dealer, and it's the same as on the eBay listing. Unless the LI dealer hasn't updated his web page to show that the vehicle might have been sold, it sure looks like a scam to me.

     

    I wonder though, how would a scammer get away with something like that? Who would be intelligent enough to have that kind of money, yet dumb enough to bid on a high ticket item without first inspecting it? I can't imagine anyone transferring money or handing over cash if there's no car. Perhaps they're only after the deposit, but PayPal is pretty good about protecting their buyers and themselves against fraud. Speaking of which, there's another funny thing about the listing: they will accept a PAyPal deposit, but there's no mention of how much the deposit must be.


  11. Problem identified and solved this afternoon. I would rather not have replied and let the topic fade from memory, but I said that I'd update you. The short answer is that the noise came from my passenger side front wheel cover! Here's the long answer:

     

    I lifted the car up again this afternoon and spun the rear wheels and listened for the sound once again in an attempt to isolate it. I was able to hear it, but it suddenly occurred to me that the sound emanating from the transmission tail shaft didn't seem loud enough to be heard at road speed. I started the car while it was in the air inside the garage, shifted into drive, and slowly released the brake. The wheels spun, but there wasn't the slightest hint of the noise I'd been hearing since Day One of my owning the car. OK, now what?

     

    I manually spun the front wheels again, checked the wheel bearings, nothing. I set the car down, backed it out of the garage, and the clicking was there again. I asked my wife to drive slowly out of the driveway while I walked beside the car and heard the sound coming the wheel cover. I removed the cover, road tested the car and for sure the sound was gone. Early on the process I had removed the wheel covers to see if there was anything loose inside them or with the retaining rings, but everything was tight and secure. I throughly checked the offending wheel cover after I removed it today and it was secure as ever. For lack of anything else to try, I readjusted the retaining ring teeth that hold it onto the wheel, although the cover was always very secure on the wheel. That adjustment solved the problem. The only thing I can think of that may account for the issue is that the slight flexing/deformation of the wheel with the weight of the car on it was just enough to have one or more of the wheel cover retaining teeth to make and break contact with the wheel. Whatever, it's fixed. I feel like a numb-nuts.

     

    Thank you for all of your suggestions - Jim

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  12. Made a run to an antiques mall in Newburgh yesterday and took the Skylark on I-84. She cruised smoothly and flawlessly at between 65 and 70 mph with coolant temperatures staying between 190 and 210 degrees F with outside temperatures around 86 degrees. My new power steering pump and hoses stayed dry as a bone. I still have to find and fix an oil leak, and the clicking noise I described in another thread continued to annoy me, but it was too nice a day to keep the car in the garage.

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  13. NTX: The click is always there, at all speeds. As I said previously it's not very loud and is only audible at road speed when the windows are down and I'm riding along something that reflects the sound back into the car, like Jersey barrier. There's no vibration at any speed, or any other symptom that might suggest a U-joint problem. I hear nothing with a stethoscope probe placed directly on the U-joint; the sound is only audible through the stethoscope when I hold the probe on the tail shaft. That's why I'm ruling out the U-joint. Hopefully it's not the tail shaft bushing.

     

    Jack: You're the second guy to mention the parking pawl. JohnD also mentioned it and I sort of dismissed it, but I should probably take his and your suggestion if I don't find anything wrong with the speedometer gear. I'll have to pull the manual and see how to check the pawl adjustment.

     

    I'll update after I get back under there in a week or two.


  14. Update (sort of). I didn't have as much time to diagnose this as I had hoped, but I did manage to find a few minutes to get under the car last week. All I had time to do was disconnect he speedometer cable in order to verify that the cable isn't where the sound is coming from. It makes a click about every quarter turn of the driveshaft. My next steps, which likely won't happen for at least two weeks, will be to remove the speedometer gear from the tail housing and see if perhaps the gear is making the sound. If not, perhaps the governor would be the next place for me to look. After that, who knows?

     

    If I can't pinpoint it after that I'll probably just let let it go until I learn to live with it, or until it gets worse or something blows up. It's not very loud and it doesn't seem to be serious, nothing like a bearing or anything like that. I have two other, more pressing things to attend to right now, like a leaking power steering pump shaft bearing and a pretty good oil leak coming from the passenger side of the engine apparently coming from somewhere above the starter.

     

    It's always something. Of course if I didn't like complaining and working on old cars I'd have bought a new Buick!


  15. Interesting information, Jim. I didn't find any evidence of welded studs on my car, or where such studs may have been removed and replaced with something else. The screws that you can see along the top portion of the window opening are identical to the ones I found along the sides and bottom of the opening, except that the ones along the bottom still had the body-mounted clips attached. The screws I removed along the top had evidence of sealer on them, so perhaps they had already been replaced once. Regardless, I'm rustproofed, all back together, and dry inside. Thanx for the insight on how things were done at the factory. - Jim


  16. NTX: The speedometer works well and the needle moves smoothly without bouncing. While that may not entirely eliminate the speedo drive gear, it leads me to believe that the sound is coming from another source. You are correct that the sound may be telegraphing from somewhere front of the tail shaft. I'll have to do a deeper dive over the weekend.

     

    John: I will check to see if there's a shift linkage adjustment that may affect the parking pawl, but I doubt that the problem may lie with that. Consider that the sound is present in all gears, and when I checked under the car I had the transmission in Neutral. There would have to be one hell of a linkage mis-adjustment for the parking pawl be be anywhere near being engaged while in Drive or Neutral! Also, the stethoscope detects the sound only at the tail shaft. I held the stethoscope on the end caps of the front U-joint as well as the drive shaft itself while listening for the sound, and there's nothing coming from either of those locations. Of course, until I find the source of the sound I can't completely rule anything out, but based on my initial findings so far I will focus my efforts for the time being on the transmission side of things. As for the rear wheel bearings, I have no idea if they've ever been replaced, but I will give a listen back there as a matter of course. You never know!

     

    Thank you both for providing your suggestions. I'll keep you posted.

     

    Jim


  17. The click is always there. I mentioned that it's only audible from inside the car when the sound reflects of something only to indicate that it's not very loud. It's audible from under the car while it's on a lift and you rotate the rear wheels. I made no attempt to simulate ride height since the noise is always there. There's no question as to where the sound is coming from, as I used a stethoscope to isolate it to the tail shaft. I initially thought it might have been the front U-joint, but the stethoscope ruled that out. I hope next week to have time to get under there again and disconnect the speedo cable and see what happens. I should have done that while I was under there the first time, but I was running out of time and needed to get somewhere and wanted to take the Buick.


  18. This isn't really a new issue, but one that I've had since I bought the car and I want to get to the bottom of it. There's a clicking sound that's coming from under the car. It's not very loud and can only be heard while driving slowly alongside a wall or Jersey barrier with the windows rolled down, or even backing out of the driveway when I'm going slowly enough so that there's no wind or road noise. I got under the car yesterday and had my son turn the rear wheels so that I could see where the noise was coming from. It’s coming from inside the Dynaflow transmission tail shaft near where the speedometer cable attaches. I ran out of time yesterday and won't likely get back under the car until next week, but I'd like to know if anyone on the forum has experienced something like this. The speedometer works fine, nice and smooth, so I'm thinking that maybe all is well with the gear and cable. There's no perceptible play in the drive shaft where it enters the transmission. I'm not concerned that there's something bad going on in there, but I'd like to know what's going on. Any ideas would be appreciated.

     

    Jim